How to heat crawl space – recommendation needed

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Topic: How to heat crawl space – recommendation needed

Home and Garden January 20, 2015 at 6:17 pm

How to heat crawl space – recommendation needed


I recently had the 3-foot high crawl space of our row home/3-unit condo building conditioned, with spray foam used on all perimeter walls, and then sealed the crawl space entrance as well as any vents, and added vapor barrier to floor. It was recommended that I add a heat source to the crawl space so that my floors are not freezing cold (I am in first floor unit above crawl space). Can anyone recommend a person to evaluation my situation and make a recommendation on how to safely provide heat to the crawl space?

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Look back in the blog a month or 2. There was a handyman list and a guy on there named Greg. He came over and built an insulator with a pocket thingy. This is the first year I’m not freezing. Really nice guy also, thanks POPville!!!

Who did you use to install the vapor barrier and spray foam insulation? Would you recommend them?

I also have a bare dirt floor on my recently purchased rowhouse in Kingman Park and can’t get anyone to provide a quote.

Thanks for any tips.

Thanks Doug!

Re: KingmanParkRes question… deciding on the best course of action was not easy and I’m still not sure I made the right choice. I got three quotes. Two of them suggested spraying the ceiling of the crawl space. One suggested open foam and the other suggested closed foam. That was dilemma one. Then upon recommendation from 2 people, I brought in a third company and they suggested “conditioning” the crawl space by spraying the walls with closed cell and closing off all external air entry points, but leave the ceiling alone. They convinced me that they were very experienced in crawl spaces and that my pipes in the crawl space might freeze if I sprayed the ceiling. They thought better to have air flow between the crawl space and my first floor unit…and suggested that my floors would end up being at least a little warmer. I chose that option and there has been no difference in floor temperature, so they said I should get a heat source for the crawl space. The company that did the work was AC&R. I think they did a good job, but just feel like they did not explain well up front that this was not really going to solve my cold issue. On a side note, we had old batting insulation that had fallen from the ceiling and lots of debris ion the crawl space, so getting all that cleared out was worth it. They do the clean out and vapor barrier installation on one day and the spray foam the following day. The other two quotes were from Absolute Insulation and Nova Spray Foam (I really like Jared from Nova Spray foam). Oh and one more thing…after I chose my option, I did talk to a contractor friend who thought I should have opted for the ceiling spray foam, and just put a heating implement on the pipes with a timer that would go on when temp reached a certain point. Anyway, hope some of this is helpful. Let me know if you have any other questions.

@ roadtripper – thanks for the recommendations.
I have a high humidity issue in the crawlspace that is my top priority and cold floors are second. Seems like best practice for crawlspaces now says seal the vents and insulate the walls, so your choice is in line with what I am reading.

Did you need to explore a dehumidifier down there too now that it’s closed off? I am interested in a powered vent fan instead as a dehumidifier is significantly added effort and operations cost. Best of luck.

I want to get a powered vent fan too that puts off heat. I emailed the handyman that Doug recommended. I can keep you posted on what I find out.

If you have a home with a crawl space, you have several options on what to do with that particular foundation type.Basically, your options are to do one of the following:
-The tried and false method of venting the crawl space to the outdoors
-Putting a little bit of supply air from the HVAC system into the crawl space
-Using an exhaust fan to move air from the crawl space to outside
-Installing a dehumidifier

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